Not too long ago, conventional wisdom said that using credit cards for everyday purchases such as groceries or gas was a warning sign of serious financial problems. But reward credit cards have changed the way many Americans think about and use their cards. Obviously, people continue to use debit cards or cash to pay for everyday items but the biggest question now is “Why?”.
Paying for the necessities of life is not as exciting as purchasing new clothes or a vacation but why not take advantage of all those ordinary (and frequent) purchases and let them earn you cash back or reward points? Let’s say your grocery budget is around $400 a month and you use a rewards card that earns you 6% back at grocery stores – you can be earning $24 a month in rewards. The Blue Cash Card from American Express is a good example. While that may not seem like a huge monthly amount, annually it adds up to $288.
If you’re looking for a good rewards card for everyday purchases, consider the following – and be sure to check out our full reviews for in-depth information.
The Blue Cash American Express card offers cardholders generous rewards at the following rates: 6% back at U.S. supermarkets (capped at $6,000 per year with amounts over this earning 1%), unlimited 3% cash back at U.S. gas stations and certain U.S. department stores. All other purchases earn 1% cash back. As a new member, you can earn a $150 statement credit by making at least $1,000 in purchases during the first three months that your account is open. The card also offers a 0% introductory APR on purchases and balance transfers for the first 15 billing cycles. There is an annual fee of $75.
BOFA’s Cash Rewards Visa delivers solid rewards on gas and grocery purchases along with no annual fee. Card members earn 2% at grocery stores and 3% at gas stations with a $1,500 combined spending cap per quarter. Any amounts over this earn 1% cash back as do all other purchases made on the card. Bank of America currently has an online-only offer where new members can earn a $100 cash rewards bonus when you spend at least $500 on purchases within the first 90 days that your account is active. Rewards that are redeemed into a BofA checking or savings account also earn an additional 10% bonus. This card comes with a 0% introductory APR on purchases and balance transfers for the first 12 billing cycles. Note: Balance transfers must be completed within 60 days from the date your account is opened.
3) Discover it
Discover it offers cash back in categories that change quarterly. From now through December 31st, members earn 5% cash back on all purchases from department stores, Amazon.com, and clothing stores, as well as 1% cash back on all other purchases. New members will also receive double the cash back they’ve earned at the end of their first year. So if you earn $150 by the end of December, Discover it will automatically double your reward to $300. This card has no annual fee and offers a 0% introductory APR on purchases and balance transfers for the first 12 months that your account is open.